UK Men's Basketball

A look at Big 12/SEC Challenge history, and Saturday’s TV schedule

Kentucky’s Malik Monk looked to make a pass during the Wildcats’ 79-73 loss to Kansas in Rupp Arena during last season’s Big 12/SEC Challenge.
Kentucky’s Malik Monk looked to make a pass during the Wildcats’ 79-73 loss to Kansas in Rupp Arena during last season’s Big 12/SEC Challenge. Herald-Leader file photo

Southeastern Conference men’s basketball runs deeper and stronger in 2017-18 than it has in years, according to most who follow the sport.

On Saturday, we’ll see how that thinking holds up to a challenge, specifically, the annual Big 12/SEC Challenge.

The teams have squared off each of the past four seasons, and the SEC has never gotten the best of the Big 12.

The Big 12 won the first three challenges 7-3, 6-4 and 7-3 before the leagues split 5-5 last season. That adds up to a 25-15 overall advantage for the Big 12.

Kentucky is 1-3 in the challenge, having lost to Baylor and beaten Texas before falling to Kansas each of the past two seasons. This season, the Wildcats pay their first visit to West Virginia since 1970 to take on the seventh-ranked Mountaineers.

After losing out on the recruitment of Zion Williamson, who picked Duke, Kentucky basketball coach John Calipari was asked about UK’s recruiting on Monday.

Since there are 14 SEC teams and only 10 Big 12 schools, four from the SEC have to sit out each season. Among the SEC schools sidelined this season was Auburn, the league’s highest-ranked team in this week’s Associated Press poll at No. 19.

The Big 12 boasts four ranked teams in the challenge — No. 5 Kansas, No. 7 West Virginia, No. 12 Oklahoma and No. 14 Texas Tech.

The SEC brings two — No. 20 Florida and No. 22 Tennessee.

Big 12/SEC Challenge

Saturday’s TV schedule

Noon: No. 14 Texas Tech at South Carolina | Noon | ESPN2

Noon: Baylor at No. 20 Florida (ESPN)

2 p.m.: Ole Miss at Texas (ESPN2)

2 p.m.: Georgia at Kansas State (ESPNU)

2:15 p.m.: No. 12 Oklahoma at Alabama (ESPN)

4 p.m.: No. 22 Tennessee at Iowa State (ESPNU)

4 p.m.: TCU at Vanderbilt (ESPN2)

4:30 p.m.: Texas A&M at No. 5 Kansas (ESPN)

6 p.m.: Oklahoma State at Arkansas (ESPN2)

7 p.m.: Kentucky at No. 7 West Virginia (ESPN)

SEC standings

Team

SEC

All

Auburn

6-1

18-2

Florida

6-2

14-6

Kentucky

5-3

15-5

Tennessee

5-3

14-5

Alabama

5-3

13-7

Arkansas

4-4

14-6

South Carolina

4-4

13-7

Mississippi

4-4

11-9

Missouri

3-4

13-7

LSU

3-4

12-7

Georgia

3-5

12-7

Mississippi State

2-5

14-6

Texas A&M

2-6

13-7

Vanderbilt

2-6

7-13

Big 12 standings

Team

Big 12

All

Kansas

6-2

16-4

Texas Tech

5-3

16-4

West Virginia

5-3

16-4

Oklahoma

5-3

15-4

Kansas State

5-3

15-5

Texas

4-4

13-7

TCU

3-5

15-5

Oklahoma State

3-5

13-7

Baylor

2-6

12-8

Iowa State

2-6

11-8

  Comments